The apex Igbo socio-cultural organization, Ohanaeze Ndigbo worldwide, has criticized President Mohamed Buhari Buhari for being overly selective in his views and comments on the insecurity related to the geopolitical zone in the Southeast.
Ohanaeze responded to Buhari’s recent statement about the alleged murder of Nigeriens in Imo state by unknown persons, in which he blamed the zone’s leaders for the development.
In a statement signed and made available to journalists by Ohanaeze’s National Publicity Secretary Chiedozie Alex Ogbonnia, the Ohanaeze is outraged that the president is eccentrically flipping over what’s happening in the Southeast while turning a blind eye to the horrors in other parts of the country. the country, including hospitals in Katsina State.
“The attention of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide led by Ambassador Professor George Obiozor has been drawn to the statement that made several headlines in which “President Muhammadu Buhari mocks killings in the South East.” According to Mallam Garba Shehu, the President’s Special Assistant for Media, “President Muhammadu Buhari has strongly condemned the recent attacks on non-indigenous persons and law enforcement officers in the Southeast by terrorists and called on the “community and religious leaders to speak more strongly.” to stand up to and defend the ethos of the nation’s cultural and religious heritage.
This day, August 7, 2022, reports that “President Buhari’s response came amid reports of the murder of six Nigerien civilians and the brutal killing of several police officers at their military posts.
Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide joins the presidency and indeed the good people of Nigeria in condemning this dastardly act that took place in Imo State, southeastern Nigeria. Ohanaeze has repeatedly explained that human life among the Igbos is very sacred. The sanctity of life is so exalted that killing a human being in any circumstance is considered an abomination. In fact, it is not in the character of the Igbo to kill in any disguise. These recent developments are indeed very foreign to the reflexes, culture and norms of the Southeast. And we have often appealed to the Nigerian security agents to ensure that the perpetrators of such acts are brought to justice as a deterrent to others. The failure of the Nigerian security agents to fish out the criminals certainly cannot be attributed to the Igbo.
“However, Ohaneaeze Ndigbo frowns at the presidency statement being nuanced against the Southeast as a haven for terrorists attacking non-indigenous persons and law enforcement officers; meaning the uncertainty persists because the leaders have not spoken forcefully. This is very unfair to the Igbo, especially when the presidency knows the root cause and nature of the insecurity in the Southeast. It should be added that the solution to the insecurity in the south-east lies in the enormous powers of the presidency.
“The above comments from the presidency appear to have ignored the protracted open war with the Boko Haram in the northeast; the Banditry in the northwest, especially in Katsina State; the invasion of Fulani Herdsmen from various communities in the Middle Belt region; the massacre of the church in Owo; the daily kidnappings on our highways; the Kaduna-Abuja train kidnapping, etc.
“A few examples highlight the current state of insecurity in Nigeria: two months ago, suspected armed herdsman reportedly killed about thirty people in two communities of Okpokwu Local Government Area of Benue State in the early hours of Sunday, June 21, in what has been described as unprovoked attacks on civilians. Channels Television said the police PR officer of Benue State Command, Deputy Superintendent of Police, Sewuese Anene, confirmed the attack in a brief statement to the journalist. And several others that I Benue State….
On Monday, July 22, 2022, gunmen attacked some officers of the 7 Guards Battalion of the Nigerian Army Presidential Guard Brigade. The incident, which took place around Abuja’s Bwari Area Council, injured three soldiers and killed eight people. According to the report, “two of the personnel killed were officers, including a captain and a lieutenant, while the rest were from other ranks.
On Friday, August 5, 2022, Advocacy News reports that “Armen have kidnapped 14 Indian nationals working with a ceramics company in the Ajaokuta Local Government Area of Kogi State. According to the report, “two Indians, two police officers and two drivers were killed when the gunmen struck”.
It added that “they were on their way home from work (West African Ceramics) when the gunmen attacked their Coaster bus.
“A Wisconsin-based Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project (ACLED), one of the world’s most trusted conflict data aggregators, stated that there were 18 kidnapping events targeting students in Northern Nigeria between January 2018 and April 2021. The ACLED data also shows that the bandits killed more than 2,600 civilians in 2021, an increase of more than 250% from 2020.
“This number is less than the number of civilian deaths attributed to Boko Haram and the province of Islamic State of West Africa in the same year.”
It added that more than 1,000 students and school staff were kidnapped between December 2020 and August 2021. Within six months, as many as 343 people were killed, while 830 others were kidnapped by bandits between July and September 2021 in Kaduna state alone, according to state government figures.” As now, all schools in the Federal Capital Territory are closed due to insecurity and no one is considering reopening.
“Paradoxically, when the district chief of Daura, Mr President’s hometown, was kidnapped and released after two months, Mallam Garba Shehu said the “incident was proof that Duara was not receiving preferential treatment and that insecurity was a national problem.
“In other words, when insecurity manifests itself in the Northwest, it’s a national problem; but on the other hand, if it happens in the southeast, it is attributed to the inability of the “community and religious leaders to speak more forcefully against the killings and to stand up and uphold the ethos of the cultural and religious heritage to defend the nation.
“I can say without any fear of contradiction that the Igbo have the greatest wanderlust and the most hospitable disposition among the various ethnic groups in the world. The non-natives of the Southeast enjoy unbridled friendliness, interethnic assimilation and a favorable business environment; what has happened to the non-indigenous people of the southeast is deeply regrettable as part of the current national disaster.
You would think that the inevitable consequences of orchestrated false propaganda, ambiguity, subterfuge, sabotage and serial alienation against southeastern Nigeria are already staring us in the face.
According to Sokoto state governor, Alhaji Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, “the marginalization of the geopolitical zone in the southeast by the federal government of Nigeria under President Muhammadu Buhari is insane and unprecedented.” Tambuwal adds: “Every time I see the Igbo cry about marginalization, I feel sad and distressed. The Federal Government of Nigeria has been unfair to the Igbo. In all socio-economic activities, it is as if the Igbo are not part of the nation.
Tambuwal wondered how Buhari could hope for good governance and prosperity in Nigeria through the resilience, creativity, ingenuity and ability of the Igbo to stimulate, promote and boost Nigeria’s abundant but dormant human resources. How do we combat insecurity by appointing heads of service based on ethnocentric and religious considerations as opposed to the best global practices of military competence? In other words, how can the Southeast be excluded from the more than 16 service chiefs of the Nigerian armed forces and paramilitary forces and expect that insecurity will not increase? And how; and how; and how…..?
“And when the chickens are home to stoke, we blame the victim. Famed psychologist William Ryan claimed that victim blaming is a horrific ideology that seeks to justify social injustice against a group. The oppressor deliberately creates an unjust chaotic environment for the oppressed; and blames the victims for the inevitable crises that result.
“Finally, it is very charitable, if not mischievous, to poison indiscriminate minds by insinuating that non-indigenous persons and security officials are being killed by the terrorists in the Southeast.
“On the other hand, it is too far-fetched an ethnic bias to attribute a national problem to southeastern Nigeria. Invariably, banditry persists in North Central because their leaders have not spoken forcefully, or rather, they are celebrated in public and have turbans or they have been offered the Sheik Gumi option.
Both history and current events in the country must have shown that unjust policies against the righteous will ultimately justify the righteous.”
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